Two men have been arrested on suspicion of posing as law enforcement officers, stopping Fresno residents and stealing cash from their wallets, police said.
The suspects were driving to Los Angeles in the rental car they allegedly used during their recent crimes when they turned the car around, went back to Fresno and turned themselves in, Fresno police Lt. Joe Gomez said.
Patrick King, 24, turned himself in Tuesday night, Gomez said, and 24-year-old Juan Calderon surrendered Wednesday afternoon.
King told police that he and Calderon had been stopping people for several weeks, searching their wallets and stealing their money.
He said that before they committed the robberies they performed "dry runs" to determine whether their attempts would be successful, according to police. Once the pair became comfortable with their actions, authorities said, they started robbing people.
Police said victims had come forward after hearing about the robberies in the media.
One man told police he was repossessing a vehicle when King and Calderon approached him and a friend, Gomez said. The pair identified themselves as police officers, then searched their wallets and allegedly stole $100.
Another man said he was driving home from work when he noticed a car following him. He parked outside his home and saw the suspects get out of the car that had been following him.
They approached him, he told police, and told him he'd been speeding. Police said the duo asked to see his driver's license and searched his wallet. They threatened to call a motor officer to perform a sobriety test and then drove off.
"The victim went inside his house and told his mother about the encounter but didn’t think much of the incident because the victim believed the suspects were real police officers," Gomez said.
For California breaking news, follow @VeronicaRochaLA